The UK prides itself on offering a safe haven for refugees of many different countries. There are strict rules for asylum seekers though and these must be adhered to by the letter if an application is to be successful. It is most important that any claims are genuine; as if they are not then the UK Border Agency will take steps to remove anyone submitting a false claim for asylum.
The word asylum, in this context is meant as a protection for those who are arriving as an escape from persecution or violence in their country of origin. Under the 1951 United nations convention, to be recognised as an asylum seeker you should have fled your country of origin and feel unable to return because of fear for your life, from persecution or violence.
The European Convention of Human Rights, also adhered to by the United Kingdom, prevents the UK from returning any person to their country of origin, if there is a real and present risk to that person of punishment, persecution or torture.
If there are other reasons for which you feel you need asylum, such as for humanitarian reasons, if there is a humanitarian crisis in your country of origin for example, the UK Border Agency could possibly grant you temporary leave to stay, even if an asylum application is refused. This could last until whatever humanitarian crisis has ended.
The aim of the UK Border agency is to complete all new asylum applications within six months of application. This means either it will be accepted and that person will be able to start their new life in the UK within 6 months, or if the application was not successful, the applicant will be returned to their country of origin.
As part of the application process, you will be interviewed and you must bring proof of ID. The UK border agency may with to take biometric information from you, which may include your fingerprints and or a facial image, usually take on site at an office.
Remember, you must have genuine reason to claim asylum, as many people are returned to their country of origin when their application is unsuccessful, and can be removed forcibly from the UK if it is found they have made a false claim.